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One size does not fit all

Discussion in 'Rules and Regulations' started by InspectorJim, Aug 29, 2016.

  1. InspectorJim

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    A little late to the party, been a busy August.
    Just sending out a feeler to see if I'm in a minority or majority.

    I'm not happy about the FAA qualifying new guidelines/rules!

    Please assume I'm familiar with my profession, and have logged in many hours flying my quad copters(FC40 & P3S) for over 2 1/2 yrs.

    I perform home and commercial inspections. This bird with a camera on it keeps me safe and allows me to gather visual information about roofs.

    I generally never fly over 100' ft away, and the flight is usually around 10 minutes.

    From what I've read the majority of the studies/test has little to do with my situation. If your familiar with the newer guidelines/test, then you'll see what I'm referring to.

    This seems to be written by pilots for pilots. Nobody has ever looked at me as being a pilot of an unmanned aircraft, I'm just another guy flying a drone.

    I realize my usage will differ from others and that's where I think the guidelines needs to be addressed, not by weight, but by the purpose.

    I like many have been patiently waiting for an avenue to fly within the confounds of the law and setting us apart from the hobbyist. Which by the way I think the FAA has failed in this go around. Again in my usage, I don't think there would be much difference other than actual flying experience.

    I would think that there are other commercial usage that will be close to my type of usage.

    So am I in a minority or majority?
     
  2. joet

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    You're not wrong. This is the first attempt at a complex problem: How to incorporate our usage into the national airspace system so as to avoid issues with manned flight. There's no way to cover every use case under one set of rules without going full monte on everyone. For every pilot who is just going rooftop high and 100' away, there's someone else inspecting crop fields at greater distances and altitudes. There's also tower inspections at even greater heights.

    Perhaps they will modify the rules and introduce something like classes/categories of flight in the future... But they were under the gun to get something done immediately, and this is what the result was.
     
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  3. Richard R

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    And we're better off than under the 333 exemptions. More flexibility and no part 61 pilot license needed. Sure it could have been better (I.e. less restrictions), but it could have been a whole lot worst too! In any case, I signing off now to go take my test. I'll let everyone know how it goes.
     
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  4. BigAl07

    BigAl07 Moderator
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    While I do not feel like Part 107 is perfect I do feel like it's a huge step forward for our industry. Keep in mind that Part 107 is a very broad brush and as such has to cover a huge amount of different applications. But it doesn't cover everything and for what you do Part 107 is going the right direction.

    It's not about your business in regards to "only flying over houses" but it's about helping you to know where you can and can NOT fly safely. Yes in many regards it's over kill but that's how life is sometimes. For 2 years now we've had people complaining that it's "just not fair" to require a UAS operator to be a fully certificated pilot and we've complained that the rules need to be more realistic. Well here they are.

    There is no way the FAA can satisfy every person every time (some of us fully believe and understand the need for these requirements and support them) but Part 107 is very much what the masses have asked for. Ironically I believe the knowledge base and testing is going to me a LOT more than what many were expecting.

    If your aircraft can fly more than 10' off the ground, can fly autonomously, and weighs more than a hummingbird then Part 107 is the right way to go. It's not DO you fly in the wrong areas but it's about teaching you to know WHERE those areas are and how to NOT fly in those areas.

    That's just my 2 cents and take it for what you paid for it.
     
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  5. joet

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    Ditto... Good luck!
     
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  6. Richard R

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    Passed, now just have to wait for it to get loaded into the system.
     
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  7. InspectorJim

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    The FAA had plenty of time to come up with more appropriate solutions!
    I would think that if I were being paid $100 pr hr, I could do a much better job of creating something worth while that really applies to this technology. (I as in We the people)
    Better than the 333 exemption? Sure, at least it opened the door for all to enter. By passing the test, does it make me a qualified Drone Pilot? According to the FAA, yes. Sure some of the information will be helpful but the majority is just clutter.

    I was hoping to see an indoor arena with fans blowing in different directions and trying to take off, fly through some hoops, then land, all with chaos around me, lights flashing, people talking, kid pulling on my leg....ya know...the real struggles of multitasking. And of course a written test of my particular bird.

    I would like to think the people who put all their time into these new regulations did so with the thought of producing good quality drone pilots. Unfortunately, I think they just tried to take the easy way out by lumping it all together. (disappointing)

    On the positive side. My 16 yr old niece who drives a car like a tank can now share the same airspace with some of the most professional drone pilots and make good money at it.
     
  8. Falcon900

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    We all should be grateful that the FAA did NOT require a "Practical Test" meaning they would test your flying abilities according to standards they set.
     
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  9. jp_flkeys

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    There are lots of people in that same corner, me for one and another home inspector I know who has the same problem you do. I do real estate photography, I don't fly over 100ft, heck for the most part I'm below the tops of utility poles getting close ups of a home for sale. I know there needs to be regulation but one hat doesn't fit all, maybe a 100 ft ceiling for folks like us in this category. I live in the Fla Keys and saw a post just today on the forum of a guy visiting in Duck Key and flew halfway across the island filming, he started over the water then flew over houses and canals filming, I know the island like the back of my hand and he flew about 3/4 of a mile over water (which is fine by me) then at least another mile over homes and followed a main canal with homes on either side (nice video by the way), it was a 23 min video & he wasn't in VLOS. If it went down he wouldn't have a clue where to look for it. That's more dangerous then me taking a few pictures of a house 60 ft in the air. I have no need to fly out of sight or at night, I just want to get a few aerials along with exterior & interior photos to show case a home. As for the test I think its serious overkill and out of touch with what most of us do. I took the pilots on line test for practice it was 35 or 36 questions and only missed 3. All questions pertained to flying a drone (That should be our test) not a test for manned aircraft, weather patterns, aircraft loading, charts, etc...doesn't have a thing to do with flying my P3P, if you wish to fly a drone out of sight yes you should have a higher level of education but not for VLOS like us trying to make a living. I use to be a home inspector and understand your reasoning completely, being safe. I can't fly up 60ft and take a photo of a house for my job but I can do it for fun all day long.
     
  10. InspectorJim

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    Thanks for the replies thus far.
    I get the FAA and Real Pilots looking at us invading Their airspace.
    Certain applications like mine and many others don't need to conform to the Old Flying Regulations, or the newer revised ones. We Need new practical regulations, whether as a hobbyist or commercial, which the only difference is money....

    And I do hope Members of the FAA are viewing this and many other forums, and listening to We The People.

    I am a proud member of PhantomPilots and I respect and put my life in the hands of commercial pilots like Sully (my hero). And I will do my best to fly responsible with my little bitty drone, just give me something I can reasonably abide by.
     
  11. ExcObs1

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    This is in no way intended to be offensive, but I don't think the masses see the big picture.
     
  12. jp_flkeys

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    The whole process was to get these things out of the air....period. If you want to fly jump through our hoops if you want it bad enough. The FAA had to get a handle on this because to many people flying to high and out of sight pose a danger & I couldn't agree more. But they did not succeed, hobbyists on youtube fly over populated areas filming all over and I just viewed some videos of the Florida Keys & Key West where people are way higher then 400ft and actually flying in the glide pattern of the Key West airport, also flew over military installation by Ft Zachary Taylor along with heavy populated areas, etc...but for wedding and real estate photographers, home inspections, etc...who fly 50-60ft in the air and do not pose a threat to aircraft are penalized.

    The Knowledge Test is a great 1st step learning tool for soon to be pilots but as sUAS pilots its seriously ridiculous. The FAA wants us to know about weather patterns, airspace classifications, sectionals, aeronautical symbols, reading charts, etc...which in turn they also say we cannot fly over 400ft, (aircraft min is 500ft), we have to stay away from airports because they are no fly zones, couldn't agree more. We cannot fly over or near airports so why is it necessary for us to understand how to approach an airport, get weather reports, know how to read terrain, turn runway lights via your radio, the list goes on & on and in no way has a thing to do with flying a UAS.

    Create a test that gives the remote pilot in command rules and regulations that pertain to what they are allowed to do, don't implement a test that is necessary for piloting a Cessna.

    I don't need to be a licensed plumber to plunge a backed up toilet.
     
  13. FlyGary

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    I think for everyone one that feels the rules are burdensome but complies anyway there will be one more that chooses to willfully or ignorantly not follow them. I saw a video recently someone posted on YouTube of a flight above 100% overcast clouds. I originally took my private license in that area and know it is used by private and military aircraft. It is only going to take one incident for these rules to get really restrictive for everyone.
     
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  14. BigAl07

    BigAl07 Moderator
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    You're missing the point. With Part 107 you CAN fly near an airport and in many areas where you NEED to know all of that information. Also keep in mind that with Part 107 you can get a "waiver" for much more advanced flight scenarios and thus you need to have some degree of "fundamental" aeronautical knowledge. Part 107 opens the door to so many opportunities but it also requires you to make an intellectual deposit to get through the door.

    For months and months people have cried "I shouldn't have to get into a manned airplane and pay $10,000 to fly my drone". Well that's exactly what changed and yet so many people are still crying that it's just too complicated. If you're going to play in the Big Boy arena you must have some Big Boy knowledge. That's one reason why the NAS is as safe as it is, because we are ALL playing by the same rules and we understand what is expected of each other.
     
    #14 BigAl07, Sep 2, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2016
  15. ZBPhotography

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    It is not that bad. The knowledge I got from studying for the Part 107 makes a lot of sense for people who fly commercially. It is all about safety. Knowing how to read METAR, TAF, and sectional aeronautical charts is very helpful.
     
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  16. kennedye

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    The technology on these things is just getting started as well; in a few years we may see Phantom equivalents with built-in TCAS and Mode-C transponders with a dedicated squawk frequency and so on, which could reduce the needs of the test considerably.
     
  17. InspectorJim

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    We all already know of some bad apples, and unfortunately it will continue. That's a pointless discussion.
    We all already know what it takes to fly commercially and as a hobbyist, today.
    And it's been said many times before, "Using drones is not my life, but just another tool."
    In my opinion the FAA satisfied a need for a select few. Now finish the job and include the rest of us. And while your at it...keep it real.

    BigA107
    Well that's exactly what changed and yet so many people are still crying that it's just too complicated. If you're going to play in the Big Boy arena you must have some Big Boy knowledge.

    We can agree to disagree.

    I for one do not think flying my drone is complicated. So why make the guidelines that way? And I'm not playing in the Big Boy Arena, way above my pay grade.

    I don't have the answers, but can offer suggestions in hopes that someone with authority can implement changes, as was done recently.
     
  18. Phil Tuggle

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    My read on the new certification is that it finally "opens the door," as mentioned by BigA107 above. I have been doing real estate photography and videos for six years by either standing on the ground or using a mast, and have flown drones (four sitting here now) recreationally since 2012. Like the OP, I have been SO frustrated -- but, only until now. I have long since abandoned my 333 application, knowing I could never afford the time or expense of even a Sport pilot certification.

    While we knew the FAA had no choice to jump in because of their authority over the NAS and, further, their commerce responsibilities forced them to segment drones from jumbo jet passenger aircraft, and many other reasons - even security concerns, we also knew they had to start somewhere; everything begins with a FIRST STEP. The Part 107 we see today is simply that step. I am personally overjoyed that the Remote Pilot certification is now available economically, so we can make some bucks in the US without feeling like we are in the shadows. And I like (LOVE) the added benefit of being able to fly A LOT closer to airports without getting our butts in a sling.

    If you really think about it, the FAA (or CAA would be the better historical term), had but one kind of pilot, and zero ratings a while back - except perhaps "Mail Flyer." Now, there is:
    Student
    Sport
    Recreational
    Private
    Commercial (what us little drone "pros" did fall under, temporally? Yipes!)
    Airline Transport
    and, thank Goodness, Remote. Yay!

    Under most of those certificates, pilots have bunches of different ratings. Our day will come for those, no doubt about it, then guys like the OP and me will be even happier....maybe.
     
    #18 Phil Tuggle, Sep 3, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2016
  19. GemVR

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    I think it's worth noting that the FAA is currently considering a new category for what they're terming "micro UAS" craft. Ostensibly this would include relaxed restrictions on PIC certification, and more stringent restrictions on VLOS, altitude and distance to qualify. Perhaps simple flight ops under 100 feet AGL and with craft+payload under 1-2 pounds might fall into this category. If you read the entire Federal Register entry for the Part 107 publication (admittedly something only a masochist like me would do) they're actively considering this as a second "refinement" stage to Part 107. However, if you're even flying 200 feet AGL to the surface in Class Echo shooting someone's rooftop from above anywhere near an airport (gotta check the sectional chart and know how to read it!) you could pose a danger to IFR aircraft on approach. Those folks are staring at their instrument panel, not out the window -- so they could smack right into you. A 20 lb drone would do a lot of damage to a Cessna. A 2 lb drone would still be a pretty big mess though.